Inheriting the Earth
by Mark Haddock
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit
the earth. - Matthew 5:5
To "inherit" means to come into possession of something according
to the operation of law. Jesus is speaking here of spiritual law, and his
notion of coming into 'possession' or 'ownership' of the earth is also a
spiritual concept. The reason the meek will inherit the earth is that humility
is a prerequisite for understanding the earth.
Understanding is implicit in the concept of spiritual inheritance
or ownership. We cannot inherit spiritually what we do not understand.
This beatitude is not saying that inheriting the earth is given as
a reward to
the meek for putting up with so much, for turning the other cheek,
or taking life's knocks on the chin. Rather, Jesus' statement is
to us as a
factual statement about the spiritual condition of humankind.
A soul full of arrogance or hubris cannot come to understand the
spiritual dimension of creation because it is full of itself. It
is not seeking
knowledge because it presumes it already knows. By contrast, the
meek or humble soul
has emptied itself of pride, and is in a state of receptivity and
seeking. When the soul is open it can receive understanding from
the earth is a manifestation of God the Creator.
There is a spiritual dimension to the earth, in addition to the
physical laws described by science. It is God's life-force, or
infused into every element of creation. The type of spiritual
inheritance or possession
Jesus is speaking of is that of gaining awareness of this aspect
of earth reality.
Humility is the fundamental basis for conservation. Ecology, the
study of the inter-connectedness of things, always remains open
to further and deeper understanding of complex relationships. Ecology
hand in hand because to gain deeper understanding requires that
we conserve that which is studied.
This understanding of the earth, which one gains through meekness,
leads to inheritance of the spiritual earth, which is eternal
and does not pass away. This is the same concept as the kingdom of
heaven on earth. It
is awareness of the spiritual dimension of the earth. Too often
people think of heaven in spatial or temporal terms, as a place
to which we
will go at
a future time. Instead, it is another dimension that may be glimpsed
now. Those to whom meekness reveals the eternal aspect of the
earth, will ultimately
attain that state of awareness more fully. Once this is so, they
truly will have inherited the earth.